Architecture in Beijing

Because of the Olympics, Beijing's architecture is suddenly becoming one of the iconic in the world. Bejing's landscape has changed drastically.

The nest-shaped stadium for the 2008 Olympic games, designed by Piere de Meuron is one of the more interesting, "never been done before" kind of design.

Another is the the dome shaped National Grand Theatre, designed by Paul Andreu.

And the latest of the buildings that are newly built in Beijing is the CCTV or the China Central Television Building designed by Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas. Which to me, is probably the most recognizable of all the buildings. I guess you could this cantilevered, block-formed, looks like unbalanced building will put Beijing on the terms of recognizable architectures. This building is like London's Big Ben or Paris' Eiffel Tower or Sydney's Opera House. When you see this building in a magazine or a newspaper or read about it somewhere, you would automatically say, "Ah..this building is in Beijing..".

The design looks simple because at first glance, its just simple blocks or rectangles that was put together but the truth is, its a complex building in terms of the size how those "blocks or rectangles" are put together. As much as it's a challenge to gravity, the building is a challenge to the mind, critics say, defying conventions of skyscrapers as vertical shafts thrusting straight up. Its engineering is so complex that the designers say such a building couldn't have been built a few years ago. That's because it took immense computing power to ensure that the design could withstand huge pressures in the earthquake-prone capital. Some 10,000 tons of steel were used in its construction.

A very modern design in a place and country where there is a lot of tradition.


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